By: Tim Young

n an industry dedicated to helping people communicate, some modicum of standardization is not only helpful, it’s imperative. What is language itself if not a standardized form of communication? This series of grunts and growls means something, and its meaning is shared, in a basic sense, between all who speak and understand the language. Pretty much every form of communication is, to one extent or another, an exercise in conveying meaning through a prearranged attachment of sounds and symbols to a set of associated meanings. That is standardization in the purest sense.

Telecom standards take the concept even further. Though standardization can be a difficult and expensive thing to implement, in the long run the idea is to increase the speed and decrease the costs—both monetary and opportunity costs—of creation and innovation. 

In this issue of Pipeline we explore, once again, the standards and frameworks that are driving and shaping communications innovation around the world, including five telecom standards that will enable the future, and examine the relevance of various standards. We speak with a key leader from the ITU-T on why global standards are key for communications growth in a market that spans the world. We check in with the TM Forum on their latest standardization push, and check out how VoLTE standards are helping to harness the capabilities of all-IP wireless networks. We also hear from groups like OpenStand, the consortium of standards development organizations (SDOs), which is working to make the process of standards implementation less painful and more mutually beneficial. Plus, we look at how standards can impact issues like public safety and energy efficiency, and, at the other end of the spectrum, examine how standards can be monetized to provide immediate material gain to the companies that implement them. 

In addition, we bring you all of the latest news and opinion impacting communications technology.


Tim Young


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